Before I get going on this post, I want to say THANK YOU (!) to everyone who shopped my ‘Counting My Blessings’ sale. You kept this girl very busy & I appreciate so your support of my little online shop. I’m hoping to expand my shop a bit this next year with lots more exclusive kits, & hopefully some exclusive little projects as well. Keep checking back to find out what’s up in my little website shop!
Things around the my backyard garden beds have been transitioning for the winter. We did get some wonderful soft rains over the weekend & all my winter flowers plantings of violas, pansies, petunias, & decorative cabbage & kale are settling in nicely. I got the final pots planted knowing the rains were coming & now I can be where it’s cozy inside & still look out on them & enjoy their subtle sparkle they add to the garden. While several of the perennials are ready for a cutback & a winters nap - these pots become the center of interest. I just love them.
As the end of the year approaches, I think we all start to reflect on the past year & I wanted to share one thing that has been on my mind (for most of the year actually). It is about social media… & the direction it has taken over the past few years. I’ve wanted to write this post especially because I get asked on a regular basis about my activity (or lack of!) on certain platforms, so I wanted to explain to you the direction I’m taking.
I know that everyone has their own opinion & experience of social media & the various platforms it now has, & I truly believe that each person’s preference for how they use - or don’t use - any of these to be just fine. I have found in the past few years - that while it might be a great way to reach folks - I’ve been pulling back from what it feels like are platforms that aren’t really interested in how & what we want/need from them - but rather what they determine we should (or shouldn’t) see, as well as *if* the folks who follow me actually will ever see what I post. (…very long sentence… sorry.) That direction seems to be increasing as time goes on & as we use & become more & more ‘dependent’ on these platforms.
For some reason (a gut feeling I guess you could say) I never jumped on the Facebook ‘bandwagon’. I’ve never really been a fan of their ‘policies’. I did create a personal account & I also created a business page (I’ve since taken down the business page) - but it’s only because I’m in a private group where the company has chosen to communicate to the folks in it through that private page on Facebook. It’s the only reason I still keep the personal page. So… if you ask to follow, friend, (or whatever it’s called on Facebook) please don’t be offended if I don’t respond. I only go to Facebook to check to see if there is a post on the private group page. (I actually don’t post, comment, or click on anything on Facebook anymore.)
The only other social media platform I’m still on is Instagram. I have a personal page (@brengr) & a business page (@brendariddledesigns) & hopefully some of you found this post because of the post I did on Instagram letting folks know that there is a new journal/blog post. (… & if you did - I’d love it if you would let me know in the comments that you did!).
I remember (many years ago!) when I first learned of Instagram, & created my personal account & I actually thought it was simply a place to store my own photo memories. I had no idea that others would be able to see my page! (Ha-ha!) I had someone ‘like’ one of my photos & I was so surprised! I really did enjoy Instagram in its early years. You could follow people & when you opened up your feed page you would see what all the folks you followed had posted in chronological order! It was bliss. You knew when you were caught up & that when you posted something - you knew that folks could see it. Fast-forward to today & the direction it has now gone - eliminating seeing things in chronological order & then adopting algorithms that now decides what you will see… when you *might* see it… & now I’ve come to realize that I can ‘like’ a photo & later it shows it to me again & it’s as if I’ve never ‘liked’ it. On top of that there is the ‘pressure’ to pay to “boost” a post (which means pay to have your post seen by those who follow you & also to those who don’t.). There have become so may ‘hoops’ to jump through just to use the platform in a meaningful, sensible way. And, once Facebook (now called “Meta”) has taken over Instagram - it has just become worse. It’s not user friendly…at all.
I’ve reduced all of my social media accounts & I’m still considering leaving Instagram - but for now, I’m keeping it mostly to (ironically) notify folks that I’ve posted a new journal/blog post.
Here, on my journal/blog pages, is where I can control what goes out on the internet. I know that if I post it - those that want to see it will be able to. The ‘sticky’ part of this is though, is that so many have become accustomed to going to one place, like IG… & maybe only want to see a photo or two & very little words…(!) (Oh my… then those folks would not be a fan of a post like this!!!) I know that it’s not everyone’s ‘cup of tea’ - but this is where I’ve decided to plant myself. I want it to be more like inviting someone over for a little visit, chat, rather than choose to meet folks on a busy crowded street corner - where we may or may not be able to find each other no matter how hard we try.
So, I’ll be keeping my Instagram account for now - but this, & my newsletter, is where I’ll be doing the majority of my communicating & sharing from now on. So I hope you’ll visit often! (I use feedly.com to follow the blog posts of folks I want to be sure to keep up with, & I’ve really enjoyed it.) I’ll also be updating (on a more regular basis… I’m a little behind!) - my Pinterest account. (I’m @brendariddledesigns (https://www.pinterest.com/brendariddledesigns/ ) on Pinterest)
So… there you have it. All my thoughts about how I’m choosing to navigate the ever-changing world of social media. I know to some it may seem as if I’m taking a step backwards - but I’m okay with that. For me the current direction most of these social media platforms are taking aren’t the direction I want to go or be a part of. I’ll just snuggle in to the places where I can host folks myself & hope you come to visit. :-)
And, as a thank you for hanging there & reading this lengthy post - I want to offer you a discount code to the website! Whether you want to treat yourself, or get a gift for another quilter/stitcher you know, or get a kit for a new project for the new year… just use the code (at checkout) SNUGGLE-IN (all caps) for 20% off everything on the website. (This discount code will be available through the end of December!)
From the bottom of my heart, thanks so much for being here… (& reading this to the end!) … I’m looking forward to meeting you here again soon!